2003 events

Weight: 
0

"Burning Planet" march against Bush

 

Image

 

As Bush arrived in London on Tuesday evening (November 18th) climate protesters were already on the streets! The "Burning Planet" March was a fantastic success. The march set out from Lincoln's Inn Fields about 7 pm, headed by our globe-in-a-greenhouse, closely followed by our giant (10 foot diameter) globe displaying the message "Stop Bush, Stop Climate Change", and somewhere behind the "Rhythms of Resistance" samba band, the 'Rinky Dink' bicycle sound system, and the 'Soapbox trike' system, too.

Already by then we'd had loads of media coverage, just as we got ready at Lincoln's Inn...with live interviews on ITN and CNN, and much more as the place buzzed with journos and cameramen all over the place. The colourful throng featured a 'Lady Flaming Planet' (Lucy Wills), assorted tiger-costumed figures, 'glowing globe'lanterns and streaming 'globe' balloons; it progressed past the ExxonMobil offices on Aldwych, down the Strand, through Trafalagar Square, up Pall Mall as the world's leading 'eco-terrorist' flew overhead in a chopper headed for Buckingham Palace, on to Piccadilly circus and finally through Mayfair, getting to the US embassy around 8.30 pm.

At the embassy we had a really great line up of speakers. First we had a tremendous speach from Michael Meacher - Environment Minister until this summer, now speaking his mind about the environmental policies of GWB (to read his speech click here )- and then more good stuff from Tony Juniper, Director of Friends of the Earth; Stephen Tindale, Director of Greenpeace, Darren Johnson of the Green Party (GLA member) and finally George Marshall one of the moving spirits of the 'Rising Tide' climate campaign group. Altogether it was an effective statement from the British environmental movement as a whole against the climate and environmental policies of George W Bush... and this was the way it came over in the media: in the Guardian, Independent and Times; on Channel 4 News (interview by Andrew Lockley), BBC 2's newsnight, and many other British, American and other foreign news channels.

Altogether a fantastic evening's event! Well done and thanks to everyone who helped make it happen!

Image

Michael Meacher speaking at the rally at Grosvenor Square.

Image

Image

'Ms Flaming Planet' and The statue-of-Taking-Liberties'

Image

Funky lanterns

Image

The CCC banner, held by Mark Lynas, revered author of 'News from a Warming World' (or something like that) with John Vidal, revered Environment Correspondent for the Guardian, to his left.

Image

Auriel Glanville (Coordinator, Merton FOE) as the Statue of Taking Liberties, Rhona Hodges from Shepstow FOE, and an (anti-)Esso-Tiger

Image

Our giant (10 foot diameter) globe with its message : which appeared on ABC TV in the US, that night. (Despite its habit of keeling over backwards all the time.)

Image

The famous Rinky Dink bicycle-powered sound machine.

Image

Esso (otherwise 'ExxonMobil') fund the ultra-right Republican think tanks which effectively determine Bush's 'do-nothing' policy on climate.

Image

This banner provided by (and held by) Ealing Friends of the Earth.

Image

Fancy lantern-thingies from Friends of the Earth

Image

Our Globe-in-a-Greenhouse yet again, with 2 (anti-)Esso tigers.

Image

The 'Rhytms of Resistance' Samba Band.

Image

A Green Party banner. Miranda Dunn is the blurry person holding it, on the left.

Image

Tony Lourenco with his 'soapbox' trike.

Image

Funky lanterns again: a picture like this appeared in The Times, next day.

Image

Think up your own caption for this one!

Weight: 
0

Putin: Broken promises, cynical self-interest, and the world betrayed

Image

At a climate conference in Moscow Putin not only failed to set a timetable for ratification of Kyoto (as expected) but indicated a distinctly negative attitude towards it. This is desperately serious because Russia is needed for the Kyoto Climate treaty to become operative. The treaty needs countries that together can account for 55% of global emissions, to ratify before it can become operative. Without the US only Russia can make up the full 55%....no other country in addition to Russia is now needed, but no other country than Russia can make upthe full 55%. So their non-ratification threatens to derail the whole Kyoto process, the world's only attempt so far to initiate a desperately needed limit on global emissions of climate-destabilising 'greenhouse gases' (mainly CO2).

As our Press release (approved by Aubrey Meyer of the Global Commons Institute!) read : "In breaking his promise to ratify Kyoto Putin has demonstrated that narrow, old-fashioned, national self-interest... or the interests of the gangster-oligarchs who now run Russia.... dominate his policy. But he will find out that unless he and the world discover a new sense of global environmental responsibility and proceed apace with the Kyoto process then any advantage he seems to gain by not ratifying Kyoto will be rapidly swept aside when the full terrifying impacts of uncontrolled and accellerating climate change become apparent. The idea that Russia will benefit from higher temperatures is not only supremely selfish and cynical given that other countries, would inevitably suffer from drought and famine, as a result of a rise in global temperature, but also laughably naive, to think we could stop the process of climate change just where we want to and not see it spiral destructively out of control. Like George W Bush, Putin has a mind too small to deal with the biggest challenge the world faces today: the catastrophic destabalisation of global climate"

We made sure there was some kind of reaction to Putin's fateful decsion - a depressing and desperately serious development - and put our message across at the Russian embassy. We had our Globe-in-a-Greenhouse as usual, that very loud megaphone to blare out the message, and a "Putin", now arm-in-arm with fellow 'small-mind', "Bush" and a 'Grim Reaper', who they have now, as it were, jointly invited to have a spree on planet earth....also a 'fire-lady' to ram home the 'global-over-warming' point.

Weight: 
0

Climate change is the real weapon of mass destruction

 

We carried a giant 10 metre long, "chinese-dragon" style, "missile", carrying the message "Climate Change is the Real Weapon of Mass Destruction" to the Labour Party Conference on the day of its opening. We also took our 'globe-in-a-greenhouse', placards with the message etc... from Meyrick Park down to the Conference centre. Getting the "missile" ready in time at the gathering point in Meyrick park was quite a struggle, but Phil and John Ackers had been working on it from early in the morning, and then Barry Botley and a team from Shepway FOE added some finishing touches to make the thing carriable.... thanks also to Enid and New Forest FOE and Roger Eede from the local Green party.

Image

A weapon of mass destruction on Bournemouth beach

The missile progressed under police escort through Bournemouth centre to its 'target' at the Conference centre where Phil used a very effective megaphone to barrack the Labour Party and Tony Blair for spending more time looking for non-existent WMD in Iraq than they were doing anything (eg in particular exerting pressure on G W Bush) about the 'REAL' WMD, the real mega-threat to the future security of the planet, Climate Change. After this John Ackers had the bright idea of transferring the missile down to the beach where its presence was particularly striking and did attract at least one film-cameraman. Meanwhile Judith from Camden FOE, and Auriel from Merton FOE, and others, were busy handing out leaflets, something that was continued over the next few days by Phil (who stayed down in Bournemouth till Tuesday evening).

The leaflet included the full text of the Guardian article by Sir John Houghton (ex-chief of the Metereological office) which was the main inspiration for this action (in it he called Climate Change a 'WMD': to read his article click here).The strong simple message that the destabilisation of global climate threatens a global tragedy of almost unimaginable proportions and that much, much, more needs to be done about it, is one that must have resonance to any party that aspires to any kind of morality, conscience or sense of global responsibility...and is a message that needs delivering to people close to power, over and over again!

Weight: 
0

Feeling the heat? You ain't seen nothing yet!

Image

This is not just a chance hot spell...this is part of something bigger...and its going to get much, much hotter: thats what the Climate scientists are saying...
"Charlie the Climate-Change Camel" and a host of other oriental/desert characters were putting over the message that Climate Change is here for real , on Saturday, 9th August, around midday in central London. The Camel - and companions - roamed around Leicester Square, Charing Cross Road etc.., giving out leaflets and generally spreading the word (and, yes, inside the camel one was able to fully appreciate the high temperatures!!!!.....)

Weight: 
0

Kyoto "March to end the world"

 

2003's Kyoto March was a "March to the End of the World". The message was clear: its global apocalypse from the USA!

Image Here are our 'Grim Reapers' !
Image At Exxon HQ, Leatherhead, 7.00 am : the determined band at the start of their 20 mile march. The guy in white with the hood is a "Horseman of the Apocalypse' (OK he has'nt got a horse, but that would be cheating, would'nt it....)
Image And here's Darth Vader ! ....although the real Darth Vader generally goes disguised as a certain 'Mr. Lee Raymond', CEO of ExxonMobil (known as "the Darth Vader of Climate Change").

Image

Image

An 'angel' at the Esso HQ : heres Sophie our youngest campaigner. She did the whole march...but by Mum-power. Thats Mum, 'Ruth Jarman', with a 'Christian Ecology' banner.
Image Epsom 8.00 am and its the 'Esso-man from Hell'!
Image And the 'Esso-man from Hell' has got a friend!
Image Our apocalyptic band on the march: Richard on the trike that carried our luggage...and the head of a recently sacrificed victim (OK, wishful thinking...)
Image A bunch of us at the half-way resting point, Wimbledon, where we were met by the 'angelic' Auriel Glanville, from the local 'Friends of the Earth' group.
Image At the Esso Station, Colliers Wood : with 'Bush-and-Crossbones' flags (or is that the "Jolly Bodger"?)
Image On the march. Thats Julia and Sharon on the right. Fast-forward this for 20 miles!
Image At Clapham Common, time for a brief rest. By now the numbers are swelling!
Image At the Imperial War Museum Park: lots more people have gathered here, where the big march though Central London will begin.
Image That's the Evil Esso-man and a "Whore of Babylon" (Lucy Wills)
Image All behind the 'StopEsso' banner and the march is about to move off. Thats Will St Leger - from Irish StopEsso - on the right hand end (as we loook at it) of the banner. He was one of our speakers later on.
Image The march comes over Westminster Bridge, banners flying. 
Image Still on Westminster Bridge.
Image Another banner and in front are (L to R) Debby Burchill (Greenwich FOE) and Steph and Jim Lodge (Southwark FOE)
Image Trumpet of doom; and a man wearing 'solar panels' to remind everyone there is a way of avoiding 'The End of the World' if only those in power (and especially the world's most powerful man, George Bush) would chose to pursue it!
Image This is what we think about Esso/ExxonMobil!
Image Green Party In evidence! Thats Miranda Dunn (Senior Campaigns-person-in-chief!)with the wooly hat and Tim Turner facing camera.
Image It's those artistic placards again!
Image The Samba Band!
Image The end of the march: some of the marchers who came all the way relaxing at last at "The End of the World Party" in Grosvenor Square. (This is Rhys Howell and friends from East Anglia Uni).
Image Jean Lambert, Green Party MEP (on right), our first speaker. Thats our 'party host' in the velvet suit and Andrew Simpson with the megaphone. 
Image Roger Higman, senior Climate Person at Friends of the Earth, speaking.
Image It's "Bush the Grim Reaper" ! He's obviously exultant over something: maybe its the money he made from Insider Trading at Harken Energy.
Image Bush-the-Grim-Reaper (Richard Solly)and a "Whore of Babylon" (Lucy Wills) dancing (and throwing dollar notes around) to the tune of "Money, Money, Money"....it's all about the money he and his mates make from oil, at the expense of the rest of the world. That's not actually Batman looming over them.....it's Franklin Delano Roosevelt (in those days the President was allowed to have a brain)!
Image The Samba band keeps the party going into the dark hours.... Hurrah for the "Rhythms of Resistance "!

 

Weight: 
0

While Canberra burns, John Howard stokes the Giant Bush Fire of the Future

Image

Howard and Bush "set fire" to Australia: We take the message to the Australian High Commission, the day before 'Australia Day'.
 
The recent bush fires that devastated parts of Canberra were made worse by climate change which will increase the likelihood of even bigger bush fires in the future. The bush fires were associated with an exceptional drought that in turn owes its severity to the effects of global warming (for more on a study that reached this conclusion click here).
 
Australian Prime Minister John Howard has refused to ratify the Kyoto treaty and is alone amongst world leaders in supporting Georgw W Bush's opposition to it. By contrast, Canada and New Zealand have recently ratified it.
 
By clinging to the coat tails of the Toxic Texan in this way, Howard is ensuring that nothing is done to prevent more devestating bush fires in the future..and indeed ever-worsening weather-related disaters all round the world, many in countries mush less able to bear the cost than Australia. Just as George Bush stops at nothing to protect the short term interests of American oil - and other fossil fuel - interests so Howard is putting the interests of the big Australian coal industry before those of future generations of Australians and the world community as a whole.
 
John Howard should celebrate this 'Australia Day' by disassociating Australia from the shameful and world-threatening anti-environmental policies of George Bush!

 

Weight: 
0